The cause of the crash of EgyptAir Flight 804 remains largely unknown. No jihadist group has taken credit for the crash – something they’re usually happy to do within hours of a tragedy making news.
According to The Telegraph; Data from the final moments before EgyptAir flight MS804 crashed into the Mediterranean suggest an “internal explosion” tore through the right side of the aircraft, a pilot said last night. French authorities confirmed that smoke detectors went off aboard the flight a few minutes before it crashed but said it was not clear what caused the smoke or fire.
The question is thus whether or not the explosion was intentional. Considering no terrorist group has taken credit for the attack, there’s a strong possibility it’s a lone wolf attack (if terrorism is the cause). What’s eerie is that the airline has been threatened with an attack in the past.
As MSN reports: In an eerie premonition, the EgyptAir jetliner that plunged into the Mediterranean on Thursday was once the target of political vandals who wrote in Arabic on its underside, “We will bring this plane down.”
Three EgyptAir security officials said the threatening graffiti, which appeared about two years ago, had been the work of aviation workers at Cairo Airport. Playing on the phonetic similarity between the last two letters in the plane’s registration, SU-GCC, and the surname of Egypt’s president, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, some workers also wrote “traitor” and “murderer.”
The officials, who were interviewed separately and who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe the airline’s security procedures because they were not authorized to speak publicly, said the graffiti had been linked to the domestic Egyptian political situation at the time rather than to a militant threat. Similar graffiti against Mr. Sisi, a former general, was scrawled across Cairo after the military ousted the elected president, Mohamed Morsi, in 2013.
While that graffiti is likely unrelated to the recent crash, Nonetheless, EgyptAir has fired a number of employees, mostly members of the ground staff, who were presumed to be sympathizers of the Muslim Brotherhood, security officials said. Similar purges took place in other companies in Egypt at the time.
One of the great mysteries in the flight’s crash is why there was no Mayday distress call from the pilots. That fact alone should raise some red flags. While we’re still waiting for an official verdict, thus far, the question in my opinion isn’t over whether or not terrorism was the cause, it’s what the terrorist’s motivation was.
[Note: This post was authored by The Analytical Economist]